The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers has put in place a framework for organising participation from the user community.
ICann's board of directors approved a framework for the formation of local, regional and global groups, in what the organisation said is a step toward more involvement from the user community in decisions affecting how the internet is run.
ICann is the non-profit organisation responsible for co-ordinating the internet's domain names and addresses as well as other policy issues related to the net's technical functions. However, the group has come under fire almost since its inception for being overly bureaucratic and ineffective.
Former president and chief executive officer Stuart Lynn, who retired from his post earlier this year, launched a reform initiative for the organisation last year intended to address some concerns about the group, yet Lynn's own initial proposal for reform limited public representation on the group's board.
Under new president and CEO Paul Twomey, ICann has moved ahead in setting a framework for user group participation.
"These groups will ensure that the voice of different sectors of the internet community will be more distinctly heard and that their representation will be effectively taken into account when ICann takes action on issues of interest to the user community," Twomey said.
The issues include privacy in the Whois database, and the introduction of new domain names and internationalised domain names.
ICann also reached an agreement to improve communication with country code top-level domain registries, creating the Country Code Names Supporting Organisation (ccNSO).
The group is a forum whereby top-level domain administrators can come together to address issues affecting them.
Scarlet Pruitt writes for IDG News Service